The recent attack on Pulse, a gay bar in Orlando has been immensely shocking and devastating and has been a huge jolt to the LGBTIQA community from the entire world. Enough speculations have been made on how the attacker was a closeted homosexual and had been a regular at Pulse himself. But the attack is a reminder of how we are falling short in making the world aware of our presence and why we too deserve a life of respect, dignity and above all a safer environment.
Almost everyday as I woke up in the last couple of days, I’d come across the story of an innocent gay man or a wonderful couple who lost their lives in this deadly massacre- the worst the US has ever seen. But what breaks my heart even more is how all of this is the result of a single ignorant man who was probably unable to come to terms with his own sexuality or his shallow pride and took to guns to bring an end to his own turmoil. It’s a shame we have to deal with such issues in 2016, almost forty years since Harvey Milk stood up for our rights and eventually died fighting for them. I really am not sure if we can in any possible way change the thought-processes of millions of stubborn minds out there. Sometimes it is futile for us to think that they could get some sense into their lives and you really can’t do much about it because well, people are rigid! When you’ve lived half or more than half of your life believing in something so strongly and then suddenly someone comes up to you and tells you, “Well you know what? You’ve been wrong all along!”, there simply is no way for them to give in! For example, no matter how much I could try and talk to my parents, they’d never be okay with pre-marital sex. My mum went berserk when she saw 7 condoms from Love My Condom gifted to me by Bernie- Mr. Gay New Zealand and then went all the more crazy when she saw a post I’d shared on Facebook with a picture of those condoms. I might have given my 200% to change their mindsets but if you yourself are not willing to, then there’s really nothing that I or you could do about it. But there’s a solution. We can make sure that our future generation doesn’t have to suffer. We can teach our kids at school that there is so much more to gender than just the existence of a man and a woman and that is okay to blur that line between the two, that it is okay for a guy to dress up in skirt and wear heels, that it is okay for a woman to not want to wear a bra and ride a bike, that it is okay for you to not want to be a man or a woman. I’m extremely happy to see the rise of feminism in the world. The rise of the concept of how men and women must be treated equally and given equal opportunities to learn and prosper in their respective lives. We do have a long way to go, especially in India where a substantial chunk of the female population knows nothing of what feminism is or stands for, but there’s hope and I choose to be optimistic.
But I’m here to talk about the people who don’t exactly fit into these two distinct categories of men and women. And there’s a lot of them. Enough for us to know and understand who they really are and why we need to talk about them. It’s sorta funny when I sit back and think about this issue. Mankind has existed for 200,000 years and the human civilization as we know it has been there for 6000 years yet we have failed miserably to understand our very own-self. Just think over it. 6000 years of civilization and we’re still fighting for equal rights for women, half of my country still doesn’t know what homosexuality is and a major chunk of the ones who know haven’t been able to grow out of their pea-sized brains to accept us for who we are, and let’s not even get to the stigma and the trauma that trans-individuals go through every f*cking day of their lives! The fact that it is so difficult for me to reach out to schools and persuade them to let me speak on sexuality and understand gender beyond the concept of a man and a woman is enough to prove the plight of every LGBTIQ individual in the world. We have manged to create the most ridiculous myths and stories around what God wants us to do, but have failed to understand the very foundation of God’s existence- love, care and acceptance. I wish there was a thing that would enable us to swap our lives for a day. I’m not even asking for more, just that one single day! And we’ll see what they’ll have to say then. All that you need to be happy is an open mind, a book and loads of hope. But look at how we’ve complicated our lives! I only wish for us to be humanists. Equal rights and opportunities for all of us human beings irrespective of our gender identity or sexual orientation. Let us all be humanists.
Yes! That’s exactly what #TheEffeminareWoman is so passionate about. She loves the language of computers and could never imagine her life without it. She might have found the love of her life now, but deep down she knows what her first love is- Programming!
And who did she decide to Effeminare this time? @mawis_vintage isn’t only a talented blogger. She’s much more than that. Perhaps the most down to earth and hard working person I’ve met. You meet her once and you know why she is the kind of blogger she is today. Good Luck Mawi! You’re doing great.
Also I had the most fun-filled Durga Pooja ever! I’ve already mentioned of my mad-love for this event and this year was no less. I did a little Dilli darshan as well. And here’s a set of pictures from what I wore on one of these days during Durga Puja. Let me know what you think of these.
Also I love being back home. Haryana has one of the most beautiful places on earth and I had the opportunity to visit one of these places. Pratapgarh farms are about sixty kilometers from where I stay and it’s actually the way to the farms that is prettier.
Following are some pictures I clicked on the day of my visit. ❤
Wall Art | Location: Pratapgarh Farms, Haryana, India
Location: Pratapgarh Farms, Haryana, India
Cousin Love ❤
Pretty pretty swans! Location: Pratapgarh Farms, Haryana, India
So I’m writing this post after quite a while since I posted the last one, and I’ll tell you why. Lately I’ve been trying to focus on learning new things. I’ve been experimenting with a couple of new ways of making my art look more mature and defined. I’m trying to make my vision clearer and making sure that I don’t get lost in the dark. I want to focus on reading for a while now. A couple of days back, I had a little conversation with someone and I realized how stagnant I’ve become and that perhaps in some ways my writing is lacking elements that a good piece of article usually has. I want to focus on writing about the beauty that lies in the simple things in life. I want to be more versatile. And I am trying to also keep up with the academics in college. I don’t think I’ve mentioned this in my posts earlier, but I’m an Electronics and Communication engineering student. In a lot of ways I’ve felt so detached from the course since the very beginning, but I’ve also learned a lot. I didn’t like my course one bit the very first semester. I would try and just run away every time I’d get a chance. I still don’t understand much in class, but what doesn’t kill you, makes you stronger. I’ve learned the importance of deadlines, the amount of talented people we’re all surrounded with, and more importantly the importance of hard work. I can actually go on and on about the past two years, but we’ll do that some other time.
Getting back, since I’m experimenting, you’ll get to see some variety in my illustrations in the coming days. And therefore, ‘The Effeminare’ series might go a little slow for a while now. The story is going to take a lot of interesting turns, and I’m going to try and make them a lot more beautiful and slick, which means I’ll need time since I also have to get my academics a little on track. 😉
Anyways, I’ve made a lot of illustrations in the weekend that just went by. It was Shraddha’s birthday on the 3rd of October and I made this illustration of hers in her pretty blue dress.
I also ended up making this fashion illustration, something very much in the lines of Shamekh Bluwi (I’m obsessed with his work!). I think I will be making more of these for a while.
This week Aravani is singing the song of love as her favorite season of the year #Fall is almost here. She’s dressed in her favorite dress from the most fun and colorful @itsjeremyscott SS 16 collection straight from the runway and she’s feeling no less than a star.
Remember the admirer we talked about in the last post? Hasn’t turned up since a fortnight. Does the possibility of love seem dwindling down the air?
A lot of the people have been asking me what the entire series is all about. So I’ve planned to release short Instagram videos for all my three characters in the future posts. You can always keep track of the series by using the hashtags. I’ve worked them all out and there shouldn’t be any issues either on the blog or on my Instagram account.
Also it’s officially Fall! I obviously love fall for obvious reasons. It’s fun, it’s exciting, there are pretty leaves all around and you can finally dress in layers, which is absolutely awesome. Loads of amazing posts coming your way. So stay tuned and paws up!
I think everyone who knows me, knows it pretty well that I’m obsessed with Indian clothes, textiles, accessories and fashion. So this week I re-created something extremely close to my heart- my mum as a twenty-one year old bride. She’s always told both me and my sister how she always wished that her ceremony was shot as a video, and that she had more accessories to wear. But trust me, she looked nothing less than stunning in that bright violet colored sari (a very un-conventional choice of color given how most Indian brides are obsessed with the color red), with a gold zari border and pretty white-tube-roses woven together and twirled around the bun. Odiya people love the color gold and weddings are incomplete without gold bangles, earrings and neck-pieces. That is one picture of hers that has always stayed with me and will continue to in the days to come. I’m not sure if a lot of people know this, but while henna is worn by a lot of brides these days all over India, traditionally alta was worn extensively by women in the eastern states of India during festivities. I love alta. It sort of just brightens up the entire look of an individual. Alta is a red colored liquid which was made out of lac insects earlier. But nowadays synthetic colors are mostly used for making alta. Women also wore a white colored liquid called shringar that smells like heaven on their forehead drawn usually in the shapes of creepers with little flowers and leaves or just a series of dots ending as a flower.
Stay tuned for the next set of looks I’ll be coming up with in the next couple of weeks. Loads of stuff coming your way.
The Effeminare Woman is a true blue fashionista at heart and she thought of recreating one of her favorite looks by the blogger Whimsy Tales this week. She’ll be recreating many more looks in the coming days and for that you’ll have to keep a track of all the work she’s up to. So stay tuned.
Got this pretty scarf from Nizamuddin Dargah this week. The food there is just yum! Took this pic while everybody was flying all their pretty kites and I was doing what I am the best at. #ClickingSelfies
Also had a pretty fun weekend with all the kite flying we had yesterday after my performance at the Independence Day. But the problem is the fact that I don’t feel like studying anymore. 😛 Wanna get through the academics of this semester as soon as possible. >_<
Because it is taking us way too long to realize that we’re in fact brothers from the same mother. So I’ve been keeping a track of the recent Humans Of New York’s pictures by Brandon Stanton and I couldn’t be happier with his pictures from Pakistan. It makes me so happy to see the way Pakistan is finally being seen by people as any other country in the world where people do live happily and explosions aren’t exactly happening all around all the time. I often speak to my friends from Pakistan and that’s exactly how I got rid of the kind of image that I had of this beautiful country. A very Happy Independence Day to both the countries. Let’s not hate our own people. We’re together in this. Hoping that we someday get back to being the way we used to be.
So this week ‘The Effeminare Woman’ is all set to take over Delhi in her pretty bike and she’s already loving it. But just because she’s riding her bike doesn’t count for enough reason to not dress to the teeth! Mixing her Indian essentials with some super chic Indian jewels, she respects her freedom and is living her life on her own terms.
But unlike The Effeminare woman, I’m not exactly the kind of person who’s into bikes. I’ve never had any fascination to automobiles, which almost all the guys around me growing up were obsessed with and my disinterest would often befuddle me. So I finally thought that perhaps I should give bikes a try and I asked my father to teach me the basics. The first time I managed to hurt my knee learning, while the second time I hurt my father pretty bad. So that sort of cancelled out the possibility of a third time. 😛
This weekend I went to watch my friend’s play called “The Gordons” which was somewhat inspired from Noel Coward’s “The Blithe Spirit”. Love going to Mandi House anyways. In the evenings, Copernicus Marg is bustling with songs, tinkling ankle bells, and happiness. Had the toughest time finding LTG Auditorium, but then there was no way I was giving up. Running around in my maroon kurta and tan dress shoes, I finally reached almost 3 minutes before the play was supposed to start. Yay! I was so happy to have made it to the play. It was very well written and executed. Perfect amount of humor and just the perfect amount of sarcasm.
Also I have to mention about all the fiasco surrounding Shri Raadhe Maa. I’m like what is wrong with us. How on earth can we believe someone so easily? How gullible as individuals are we? But I have to give it to her for being able to con so many Indians so well, given the amount of followers she’s got with a fancy website and a registered Facebook page. Like whaaat? And then how can I not mention about all the moral policing going around in our country? Some forty odd couples were taken to the police station from various lodges and hotels surrounding Madh Island and Aksa in Mumbai and humiliated for ‘public Indecency’. Yes. Consenting adults who’d checked into private hotel rooms were charged with indecency in public and were not only insulted but also fined. The irony of the situation I tell ya! When are we all planning to grow up? No, really when?